FG Calls For Judicious Use Of SOML Funds
- Written by Oluwafemi Olowookere
The Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole has called on State Commissioners of Health in the 36 States and FCT to make judicious use of the Saving One Million Lives Programme For Results (SOML-PforR) Funds to improve the lives of women and children in their respective states.
This, according to the Minister would give the states another opportunity to access more funds.
The Minister was speaking at the 5th Steering Committee Meeting of Saving One Million Lives Programme for Result in Abuja.
It would be recalled that in July, 2016, the Federal Government of Nigeria disbursed US 1.5 million to all the states of the federation and Abuja to improve on maternal new born and child health, increase treatment of childhood diseases, improving child nutrition, immunization, malaria control and the elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV.
Prof. Adewole said that the 5th meeting was to review what was done after the last meeting in May and to share Ideas on what could be done to address challenges hindering quick progress of the progamme in some states.
The Minister noted that stakeholders were passionate about Saving One Million Lives Programme and were watching with keen interest at the implementation of the programme.
He advised the states to put in place strong steering committees and well-articulated work plan to ensure excellent execution of the programme.
He urged the State Commissioners to complement the federal government’s effort by innovating programmes aimed at improving health system of their states.
He assured that the next disbursement would only commence when the independent verifier, World Bank and Federal Ministry of Health were satisfied with the level of implementation of the programme in the states.
In his presentation, the Independent Verification Agent, Dr. Olaokun Soyinga said that each state would receive a total of US 160,000 per year when the state had performed excellently in the previous year and fulfilled the 4 different criteria for the next disbursement.
The first criterion for the disbursement was that the state must develop and update action plan, second was that the state must conduct quarterly high level review meeting to discuss analysis and agreed upon activities plan with at least one of the three officials present, the Commissioner of Health, Permanent Secretary Health or Executive Director of State Primary Health Care Development Agency.
Thirdly, the state must have performance management with commensurate capacity accountable for the performance, and the fourth criterion was that the state must provide evidence of continuous analysis of the available data on primary healthcare performance including availability of financial resources.
Also speaking, the World Bank Representative, Dr. Bejamin Loevinsohn commended Federal Government of Nigeria for initiating the Progamme.
He appealed to the State Commissioners to increase their commitment for the Saving One Million Lives Programme For Results’ SOML –PforR in order to achieve the desired goals.